Wednesday, May 6, 2015

DNF Review: Incarceration – M.G. Field

Incarceration – M.G. Field

Struggling with grief and loneliness after losing his wife in a tragic accident, Jonah Smithers, an English teacher at Fern Hill Penitentiary, finds that his students’ misfortunes make them kindred spirits. But one day a charismatic inmate walks into Jonah's class. Seymour Shields is serving time for threatening the life of a Hells Angel, but he's an intellectual, a gifted writer. When Jonah comes across a photo of Seymour's beautiful wife, Kate, his curiosity about her and her enigmatic husband becomes an obsession. Seymour's sophistication seems too good to be true, and Jonah wonders: has this student's incarceration somehow been contrived—and, if so, for what purpose? Jonah visits Kate, hoping she can provide some answers, and is immediately drawn to her vulnerability. As his relationship with Kate intensifies, the dark truth about her husband emerges, and Jonah is drawn into a terrifying web of duplicity and deceit from which there is no apparent escape. Incarceration follows Jonah’s journey through a test of strength and loyalty that will take him from the razor-wire of Fern Hill to the hidden reefs of Georgian Bay and beyond.

Review: It’s rare that I don’t finish a book, but I made it about two-thirds of the way through this one before giving up. The premise sounds promising: A teacher in a prison school gets caught up in the illegal activities of a deadly gang. I expected the story to be fast-paced and intense.

Unfortunately, I struggled to stay interested in this book. The writing and the editing feel very amateurish. The characters lack personality, and I had a hard time understanding/believing the motivations for their actions. The story is slow and bogged down with meaningless details. I don’t need to know the scores of hockey games or how many times the dog went out to pee. I want something to happen.

This book just isn’t my thing. I couldn’t connect with the characters, and I don’t have enough patience for the sluggish plot.  

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